Town and state officials prepare for Article 23

ALBANY: “Renewable Energy Act,” could be included in state’s 2020-21 budget.

Local officials are grappling with the possible inclusion of Article 23, or the “Renewable Energy Act,” in New York state’s 2020-21 budget. Some municipalities have already resolved to become “Article 23 Sanctuary Towns,” pledging opposition to the Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s proposal whether or not it’s approved with the budget.

Article 23 is a proposed amendment to the budget which would streamline the siting process of large-scale, green energy projects by giving siting decisions for these projects to a state agency, bypassing local and zoning laws. This is on the heals of the Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act, which passed in 2019 and stated the state’s goal of generating 70% of its electricity from renewable sources.

“I’m not for Article 23,” said Jeffrey Dewart, supervisor of the Town of Somerset. “It takes away, basically, all our rights in our town, our zoning and our comprehensive plan and everything.”


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